HCS Yearly Current Affairs 2020: National-IV
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HCS Yearly Current Affairs 2020: National-IV

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HCS Last One Year Topic Wise Current Affairs: National Affairs Part-IV

Haryana Civil Services Exam

CURRENT AFFAIRS YEARLY 2020

Last one-year Current Affairs For HCS Exam: National Affairs Part-IV

1. Under the aegis of International Solar Alliance(ISA) NTPC Ltd, the Largest power generation utility of India plans to establish solar power plants in Sri Lanka as a part of the strategy to exhibit the presence of India in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR) amid China’s attempt to attract nations into the “Belt and Road” initiative.

  • The move comes amid a growing Chinese presence in the Indian Ocean Region, which India considers its sphere of influence.
  • Petronet LNG Ltd had earlier announced its plans of setting up a liquefied natural gas terminal in Sri Lanka.

2. The world’s first electrified rail tunnel that fits double-stack containers will be operationalized in India.  

  • It cuts through Aravali mountain on the Western Dedicated Freight Corridor (WDFC) near Sohna, Haryana.
  • The project is implemented by the DFCCIL (Dedicated Freight Corridor Corporation of India Limited).
  • Geologically, this tunnel is safe and stable as it is caved through 2500 to 500 million-year-old Proterozoic Rocks mainly Quartzite, Schists, and slates of Alwar/Azabgarh groups of Delhi Supergroup rocks which have a high bearing capacity,
  • The tunnel connects the Mewat and Gurugram district of Haryana and negotiates a steep gradient on the uphill and downhill slope of the Aravalli range.

3. The International Solar Alliance was jointly launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and then French President Francois Hollande at the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris on 30 November 2015. 

  • The ISA became a treaty-based intergovernmental body on 6 December 2017. 
  • The First Assembly of the ISA was held in New Delhi on 3 October 2018. The Assembly was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the United Nations Secretary-General H.E. Mr. António Guterres. To date, 87 countries have signed the ISA Framework Agreement and, of those, 67 have also ratified the same.

4. The third unit of the Kakrapar Atomic Plant has achieved criticality 700 MWe at the plant in Tapi district which is fully based on indigenous technology of Gujarat.

  • Criticality is reaching normal operating conditions. It indicates that the plant is now set to generate power.

“The first two units at Kakrapar of 220 MWe (Megawatt electric) each were based on Canadian technology. The third unit is fully indigenous.

  • The first Pressurised Heavy Water Reactor (PHWR) of 220 MWe was commissioned on May 6, 1993, while the second unit of similar capacity was commissioned on September 1, 1995.

5. The Government of Andhra Pradesh has signed an MoU with AMUL to empower women self-help groups and to encourage cooperatives in government sectors.

  • The MoU was signed by Poonam Malkondaiah, Special Chief Secretary Agriculture, Animal Husbandry and Dairy Development, and Rajan, Chennai Zonal Head of AMUL
  • Andhra Pradesh produces around 4 crore liters of milk per day and stands 4th in the production of Milk with only 24% under the organized sector.
  • The State Government is providing around Rs.11000 crores per year to the 90 lakh women SHGs under YSR Cheyutha and YSR Aasara.

6. The Railways Minister Piyush Goyal has announced India's first cable-stayed Railways bridge Anji Khad Bridge” to connect Katra and Reasi in Jammu and Kashmir (J&K).

  •  This bridge is being developed by Konkan Railway Corporation Limited (KRCL). This bridge is a part of the Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla Rail Link (USBRL) project.
  • The total length of the Anji Khad Bridge is 473.25 metres.
  • It has the support of 96 cables and has been designed to handle heavy storms of strong winds.
  • It will have an integrated monitoring system by means of numerous sensors installed at various locations on the bridge.
  • The USBRL project also involves the Chenab river bridge. 
  • The Chenab Bridge once completed, will become the world’s highest rail bridge

7. The Chief Minister of Assam has announced the up-gradation of Poba Reserve Forest, a vital biodiversity hotspot in the Dhemaji district of Assam, as a wildlife sanctuary.

  • The announcement was made during a meeting with senior officials of Lakhimpur, Dhemaji, and Majuli districts at Jonai.
  • Declared in 1924 as Poba Reserve Forest, it has an area of 10,522 hectares and is home to a large number of flora and fauna.
  • CM also visited the Outer Jonai and Bera Sapori areas in the district and took stock of the devastation caused by the flood.

8. Madhya Pradesh has topped in implementation of the Pradhan Mantri Street Vendors Atma Nirbhar Nidhi (PM SVANidhi) by sanctioning an interest-free loan of around Rs 15.50 crore to 15,500 street vendors in the state.

  • As of 12th July 2020, 8,70,300 street vendors have registered themselves under the PM SVANidhi.  
  • Out of the 8,70,300, about 1,76,000 street vendors have been issued identity cards and vending certificates.
  • PM SVANidhi is a central sector scheme that was launched on 1st June 2020 to help and formalize the street vendors involved in small businesses across the country.
  • The scheme is funded by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.
  • Under the scheme, financial assistance of Rs 10,000 is being provided without any interest from Banks for a period of one year to street vendors across the country so that they can resume their businesses in the post nationwide lockdown period.

9. Chhattisgarh State Legal Service Authority and the High Court organized India’s first e-Lok Adalat to ensure the administration of justice amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

  •  The high court Chief Justice P R Ramachandra Menon inaugurated the e-Lok Adalat through video conferencing.
  • Lok Adalat is one of the alternative dispute grievance mechanisms or a forum where pending cases or disputes in the court of law are settled or compromised whereas e-lok Adalat will be handled virtually.

10. Indian Railways has transported dry chilies from Guntur in AP to Benapole in Bangladesh for the first time.

  • Guntur and its surrounding areas in Andhra Pradesh are well known for chilli cultivation. 
  • Earlier, the farmers and merchants in and around the Guntur area have been transporting dry chilies by road to Bangladesh in small quantities and that was costing around Rs 7,000 per tonne. 
  • During the lockdown period, they could not move this essential commodity by road.
  • The cost per tonne for carrying by Special Parcel Express is very cheap and economical as compared to road transport. 

11. The fourth cycle of the All India Tiger Estimation 2018, results of which were declared to the nation on Global Tiger Day last year by Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi has entered the Guinness World Record for being the world’s largest camera trap wildlife survey.           

  • The country now has an estimated 2967 tigers as per the latest census.
  •  With this number, India is home to nearly 75% of the global tiger population and has already fulfilled its resolve of doubling tiger numbers, made at St. Petersburg in 2010, much before the target year of 2022.

12. PM Narendra Modi will inaugurate Asia's largest solar power plant on July 10, 2020, at Rewa district in Madhya Pradesh.

  • PM Modi will dedicate 750 MW plant to the nation through the means of video conferencing. 
  • The plant is spread over 1,590 acres of land and is one of Asia's largest single-site solar power plants.

13. India is the third-largest electronic waste generator in the world after China and the USA and these three countries together contributed 38% of total 53.6 million tonnes (Mt) of e-waste, generated worldwide in 2019.

  • Releasing these data, the UN’s Global E-waste Monitor 2020, has presented a worrying scenario where only 17.4% (9.3 Mt) of the total e-waste was collected and recycled globally. 
  • It means gold, platinum, and other high-value recoverable critical raw materials (cobalt, palladium, indium, germanium, bismuth, and antimony), worth the US $57 billion, dumped or burned in e-waste last year.

14. India and Bangladesh have signed an agreement for the formation of a 50:50 Joint Venture Company (JVC) for LPG business in Bangladesh.

  • The agreement was signed between the  IOC Middle East FZE, Dubai, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Indian Oil Corporation (IOC), and RR Holdings Ltd., Ras Al Khaimah, UAE, the holding company of Beximco LPG of Bangladesh.
  • The new Joint venture company set up takes further the ‘neighborhood first’ policy of the government of India
  • The Joint Venture Company will help reduce the cost of import of LPG and make it more affordable for the consumers in Bangladesh.

15. Dharmendra Pradhan, Union Minister of Steel & Petroleum and Natural Gas virtually inaugurated Asia’s first Continuous Rebar Production Facility near Gobindgarh, Punjab 

  • It was launched by Madhav KRD Group in association with International Zinc Association(IZA) with the support of Hindustan Zinc Limited
  • The facility will produce the new Continuously Galvanized Rebar (CGR).
  • The annual capacity of the facility is over 30,000 tonnes.
  • Under the brand “JYOTI”, The facility will manufacture ZNCOAT TschemesEMPCORE TMT bars.
  • Jyoti is the first of its kind in Asia to apply CGR technology with enhanced life and low maintenance cost.
  • Continuously Galvanized Rebar is Galvanized steel with standard quality of zinc coating which will reduce the risk of cracking due to bending.

16. The first edition of ``Fisheries and Aquaculture Newsletter “ ‘Matsya Sampada’ has been launched by the Union Minister of Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries, Giriraj Singh.

  • From the first quarter of 2020-21, newsletter Matsya Sampada will be published on a quarterly basis. 
  • The operational guidelines for the PMMSY scheme have also been published in the first edition of the newsletter.
  • The Government of India in May, 2020 launched a new Flagship Scheme i.e. the Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana (PMMSY) for the sustainable and responsible development of the fisheries sector at an investment of Rs. 20050 crore. 

17. Uttar Pradesh Governor Anandiben Patel has been given the additional charge of Madhya Pradesh during the absence of incumbent Lal Ji Tandon

  • Tandon, 85, has been undergoing treatment at a private hospital with breathing problems, and fever since June 11.
  • Senior BJP leader Lalji Tandon, who was governor of Bihar, has been transferred to Madhya Pradesh in July 2019

18. Maharashtra State Government has introduced “Maha Parwana” plan to attract fresh investment in industries.

  • This plan will offer incentives and a single-window clearance system.
  • The companies with investment proposals for Rs.50 crore or more will get relaxation on getting clearances from multiple departments with assurance letters (Maha Parwana).
  • These companies should apply at the Maharashtra Industry, Trade and Investment Facilitation Cell (MAITRI), single window system and get online permission within 48 hours.

19. Maharashtra government has declared the  29.53 square kilometer Tillari forest area in Dodamarg and Sawantwadi range in coastal Sindhudurg district as a conservation reserve area.

  • The Tilari ecosystem breeds tiger population and serves as the source population for the Sahyadri tiger reserve.
  • This is the 1st conservation reserve in Sindhudurg district, 62nd for the state. It is the 13th such reserve in the western ghats. 
  • Tillari will be the 7th corridor in the state announced as a ‘conservation reserve’.
  • The decision was made considering the ecological, zoological, and floral significance of the area, which will play a vital role in wildlife conservation, particularly for the movement of tigers.

20. India has become a founding member of an Alliance for Poverty Eradication at the UN, launched by the President of the General Assembly, 

  • The alliance will aim at focussing on efforts to boost the global economy in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • President of the 74th Session of the UN General Assembly Tijjani Muhammad-Bande will formally launch the 'Alliance for Poverty Eradication' on June 30.
  • He will also galvanize the Member States, the international community, and other stakeholders to support actions geared towards poverty eradication.
  • India has joined the alliance as a founding member and stressed that ending poverty is not just about monetary compensation but guaranteeing access of the poor to quality education, healthcare, clean water, sanitation, decent housing, and social security.

21. India has joined the league of leading economies including the USA, UK, EU, Australia, Canada, France to launch the Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence (GPAI or Gee-Pay). 

  • GPAI is an international and multi-stakeholder initiative to guide the responsible development and use of AI, grounded in human rights, inclusion, diversity, innovation, and economic growth.
  • India has recently launched National AI Strategy and National AI Portal 
  • By joining GPAI as a founding member, India will actively participate in the global development of Artificial Intelligence.
  • GPAI will be supported by a Secretariat, to be hosted by Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in Paris, as well as by two Centers of Expertise- one each in Montreal and Paris.

22. The Jammu & Kashmir Administration approved the Agriculture Production Department’s proposal to change its nomenclature to “Agriculture Production & Farmers Welfare Department” and announced new rules for appointments to various posts.

  • The decision of J&K administration lines with the center’s decision in renaming the Ministry of Agriculture as the “Ministry of Agriculture, Cooperation and Farmers Welfare”.
  • The issues of farmers'' welfare through various schemes have become the priority areas which include Public Private Partnership mode, greater investments in agriculture, enhancing credit flow, and insurance coverage in the interest of the farming community.

23. AarogyaPath, a web-based solution for the healthcare supply chain was launched to serve manufacturers, suppliers, and customers to effectively deal with the Covid-19 pandemic.

  • This national healthcare supply chain portal will remove supply chain bottlenecks during the Covid-19 pandemic.
  • The vision of this initiative is to set up an information management and forecasting database platform at the national level.
  • It will capture demand and supply scenarios for key healthcare needs items.
  • This public platform will help healthcare users like hospitals, pathology laboratories, research institutes, medical colleges, and patients.

24. The Central Railway's Railway Protection Force has deployed a robot, ''Captain Arjun'', to screen patients and also enhance security surveillance at the Pune Railway Station. 

The ''Robotic Captain ARJUN (Always be Responsible and Just Use to be Nice) keeps an electronic eye on to screen passengers and a watch on anti-social elements during boarding time.

25. Raja Parba, Odisha’s three-day unique festival celebrating the onset of monsoon and the earth’s womanhood has begun. 

  • As a mark of respect towards the earth during her menstruation days, all agricultural works, like ploughing, sowing are suspended for three days.
  • The Odisha Government has banned any kind of congregation between 13 to 16 June in several districts.

26. Madhya Pradesh government has given ‘corona warriors’ status to Divyang Anganwadi workers. 

  • These divyang Anganwadi workers are playing an important role in the state during the ongoing Corona crisis.
  • They are distributing nutritious food from house to house of the beneficiaries.
  • They are also advising people to avoid corona infection. Anganwadi workers advise that stay at home and follow the mantra of social distancing in remote areas.

27. Odisha has become the first state in India to receive prestigious ISO (International Organization for Standardization) certification for its 44 tribal hostels of Keonjhar (32 hostels ) and Sambalpur (12 hostels) districts improving their overall infrastructure and standards under Mission Suvidya.

  • The certification is an example of the transformation targets set under the state’s 5T(Technology, Transparency, Teamwork, Time and Transformation) framework.
  • The remaining hostels would be assessed after the lockdown is lifted and restoration of normalcy.

28. Indian Railways has created a new global benchmark by commissioning the first high rise Over Head Equipment (OHE), which has a contact wire height of 7.57 metres and successfully run double stack containers in electrified territory on Western Railway.

  • This achievement is a first of its kind in the world and will boost the ambitious mission of Green India as a latest green initiative over Indian Railways.
  • With this, the Railways has become the first railway to run Double Stack Container train with high reach pantograph in high rise OHE territory, the operations of which successfully commenced from Palanpur and Botad stations in Gujarat.

29. The population of the Asiatic lion at the Gir sanctuary in Gujarat was surveyed with the help of Poonam Avlokan exercise, which showed the count of Asiatic Lions has increased from 523 in 2015 to 674 in 2020, indicating a rise of 29% in lion’s population.

  • Also, the distribution area of the lions was also increased to 36% from 22,000sq Km in 2015 to 30,000 sq Km in 2020.
  • The Asiatic lions are found in protected areas and agro-pastoral regions of Saurashtra covering about 9 districts in the Gir forest.
  • It is the largest compacted dry deciduous forest in the western region of India. It was declared a sanctuary in 1965.

30. The Kisan Credit Cards campaign has been launched by the government to benefit the dairy farmers. 

  • Under the campaign, the government will provide Kisan Credit Cards to 1.5 crore dairy farmers working with Milk Unions and Milk producing Companies in the next two months by July 31, 2020.
  • In this regard, the relevant circulars & KCC application format have been distributed to unions and federations.